August 30, 2015
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Two dengue drugs enter phase 2 trials

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Singapore’s National Medical Research Council has awarded a grant to Singapore General Hospital supporting entry of two dengue treatments — the antiviral celgosivir and the disease-modifying modipafant — into phase 2 clinical trials next March, according to a press release.

Celgosivir is an alpha glucosidase inhibitor, while modipafant is a platelet-activating factor receptor antagonist. 60 Degrees Pharmaceuticals and researchers at the hospital will evaluate the safety and efficacy of the two drugs in dengue fever patients.

"Other viral diseases such as hepatitis C and HIV required combination regimens to demonstrate clinical benefit,” Geoff Dow, PhD, chief executive officer of 60 Degrees Pharmaceuticals, said in the release. “This may also be the case for dengue.”

Celgosivir was previously evaluated in a phase 1b randomized, double blind, placebo-controlled trial. Results, published in the Lancet Infectious Diseases in August 2014, showed that although the drug was generally safe and well tolerated, it did not appear to reduce viral load or fever burden in dengue patients.

However, FDA-approved vaccines or antiviral drugs do not exist for dengue, according to the release, and treatment is limited to supportive and symptomatic care.

Reference:

Low JG, et al. Lancet Infect Dis. 2014;10.1016/S1473-3099(14)70730-3.